Jose Mourinho is free to talk to rival clubs straight away, report The Times, insisting Chelsea are not able to prevent it.
Mourinho was fired by the Blues last week after Chelsea had slipped to 16th in the Premier League table.
The Times say there will be no contractual reason why he can't join Manchester United, despite Tottenham Hotspur being blocked in similar circumstances when he was first sacked by the Blues eight years ago.
The report states: "Mourinho, who was sacked by Chelsea last week, seven months after guiding the club to the Barclays Premier League title, will be free to join United should Van Gaal be dismissed.
"Chelsea blocked an approach from Tottenham Hotspur after Mourinho left Stamford Bridge in 2007. This time, though, the club failed to add such a prohibitive clause in the settlement agreed last week."
Mourinho signed paperwork stopping him managing another Premier League club for two years after that exit, but on this occasion he did no such thing.
Speaking to The Independent earlier this year, Mourinho explained that Tottenham's interest in him was immediate, with chairman Daniel Levy getting in touch with him on the very day he left, but a deal was not possible even if he wanted to.
The ball is now in Manchester United's court, or more specifically Louis van Gaal's, to show he deserves to remain as manager.